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Public Statements

Tax Extenders Act

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

Tax Extenders Act

Mr. COBURN. Mr. President, we are going to have an amendment on the floor in just a moment that simply requires the Senate to post every time they create a new program and every time they spend money outside of pay-go so that we truly are transparent with the American people about what we are doing.

With great fanfare, we passed pay-go. We made it a statute. The last three bills in a row, we have allocated up to $120 billion outside of pay-go. With all the claims, with all the fanfare, we said we are going to now start paying for everything we do, and the first three bills to come before the Senate, what do we do? We simply say: Rules off; doesn't count; we are going to spend our grandkids' money.

For the life of me, I do not understand the controversy around this amendment. It is about us being transparent with the American people. No more games. No more saying we are doing one thing and doing another. All this amendment says is, when we violate our own rules and we spend money we do not have and we do not pay for programs by eliminating programs that are not effective, that are not a priority, that we are going to list it on our Web site. Nothing could be simpler.

We have offered the Secretary of the Senate our staff to do that work. It takes about 5 minutes a day to post that information and probably 5 minutes every third or fourth day. We will happily pay for that or we will offer one of our staff to put that information on the computer.

We are going to have a side-by-side amendment that does nothing. We understand that. That gives people a way to not vote for our amendment.

If we want to solve the problems in America and we want to solve our financial problems, the first thing we have to do is have real information about what this body is doing. This amendment will do that.

I yield back the remainder of our time.


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